So you could consider maybe not playing House Party

Let’s make this clear: of course there’s nothing wrong with games about sex, nor games about people trying to pair up with others to have sex. And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with games being used to turn someone on. What remains the case is that it’s absolutely fine to criticise such games for being utterly terrible at it, and indeed comment on their representations of people. To loudly point out that a game is a misogynistic pile of shit is not to call for it to be banned, but simply to observe the fact. Everyone good with that? Great.

House Party [official site] is a misogynistic pile of shit. But first and foremost, it’s a terrible game. (NSFW warning: There’s some nudity in the pics below.)

House Party is, if nothing else, a fascinating exploration of a certain type of male mind. It’s the type of male mind that sees women as goals to be conquered, rather than autonomous individuals, and believes that manipulated suitably, all women will want to see inside your underpants. Or, as is the case in House Party, you can show them inside your pants whether they like it or not. Here, have half an hour of my playing it! (NSFW warning: video contains a great deal of nudity and sexual content)

You are a man, with no identifying features beyond a permanent erection, who arrives at the house party of a lady called Madison. As the game’s introductory text attempts to say, “Looking around, the attendance seems heavily weighted in the female variety, and the male competition looks pretty weak. This might be your lucky night…” Gosh, we seem nice, don’t we? And so into the party you go, chatting to the five or six ladies, and two other men, trying to work out whether the utterly obnoxious remarks you’re offered to choose from will be understood by the authors of the game as utterly obnoxious, or indeed astoundingly charming.

That’s actually the biggest challenge in what amounts to a first-person adventure game with cartoon boobs: working out what the people behind its creation think is a clever thing to say. So telling a girl that she’s prettier than her ugly sister is, of course, an ingratiating remark that warms you to her heart. But ask someone their star sign and she’ll react like, well, you just called her sister ugly. It’s quite the lottery!

The ultimate goal is to see which of the ladies at the party you can trick/lie/drink your way into shagging you, with – the developers claim – different avenues cut off or opened up by the choices you make. None of that’s true, of course, because at this point in early access it only has two ladies with storylines written that end in sex. But getting that far in either is as much a test of your taste as it is of your patience.

housec2

It’s a terrible game. Movement is ghastly, your character seemingly seven feet tall and mounted on casters. It’s ugly, with terrible textures. Some of the women’s faces are well animated, and a lot of love has gone into making the boobies bounce just right, but beyond that it’s clunky as all hell. You can interact with some objects by picking them up with a disembodied floating hand, and sort of brokenly throw them around. Others are fixed in place and have hotspot responses to your mouse cursor, and can be picked up and put in your inventory. And sometimes you have to combine the two. It’s the sort of idea that most developers would not even have, let alone not reject upon implementation. I wasn’t able to complete one “quest” (which involves attempting to sober up one of the other men at the party by making him coffee) because I tried to balance a kettle on someone’s head, and it fell behind a table, irretrievable. Other times you’ll just not see objects that can be picked up because the game is so laughably lit that they’re invisible on their surface in the darkest corner of a dark room.

There’s one lady, called Katherine, who is designated as the “clever one”. This is both an outstanding insult to every other girl at the party, and the most hilariously revealing example of the witlessness with which the game is written. The attempts to write “clever” dialogue for her are… it’s embarrassing for everyone involved. Oh, and abandoned as a notion pretty much straight away when the path to getting her to bed lies in getting her to pose topless for a photograph to show Frank, the Vin Diesel-looking guy at the party who has – for no clear reasons – confiscated all the alcohol and forbidden anyone to drink. (Get seen holding a bottle by him and it’s an instant game over.) Katherine responds to this notion with:

“That fucking douchebag! Well what the fuck, I’m not just going to strip off in the middle of this party with all of these people around. And the cell phone service in this house is spotty at best. I have way too many important text messages going on, and I seem to get the best reception here. Figure that shit out if you want a tittie picture of me.”

I love everything about how awful that outburst is. First, it’s not, “No, obviously I won’t do that,” but rather, “how dare he, it’s busy in here”. Then she just utterly at random changes subject to discuss phone reception! Because that’s a thing. That’s how people are! The reason for it, you discover, is that the puzzle to get her alone so she’ll agree to a nudey snap is to chase her around the house holding a cell signal blocker until she randomly runs to a quiet place. Yes.

housec1

The result is a game where women are portrayed in the most insulting way imaginable, feeble simpletons who will get their tits out if you can only get their idiot little minds to recognise how awesome and manly of a guy you are. And heck, if you can’t manage that, you can always press P to get your penis out, and just show it to people. Different characters react in different ways, some horrified, some delighted. And if that’s not enough, you can then press 1 to have a wank. No one seems to really mind if you jerk off in the middle of the party, so long as you don’t ejaculate directly on them. Do that, and, well, they’ll express their displeasure, before carrying on as normal.

What a thing.

But as I said at the start, that it’s created by the sort of mindset that makes you have a long worry isn’t the only awful thing about House Party. It’s just so badly made. Katherine, after being snapped with her boobs out, can then be given rum and thus made incapable of resisting you. (Her boyfriend is, she informs you many times, “a dick”, so she wants to have sex with you for revenge.) So upstairs you go, lock the door, when she reveals she wants two other things first. Something to masturbate with while you’re out the room (you know, like ladies do), and a bottle of water. As it happens I already had the necessary salami in my inventory, pilfered previously from the fridge. But a bottle of water I had not found. Never mind that I’m carrying five or six bottles of beer that no one wants, I can’t empty one out and use that, no no. Never mind that the house is covered in dozens of empty cups! Instead you’re supposed to pick up a so-poorly-designed-that-it’s-almost-invisible empty vodka bottle from Frank’s table, and fill that. But pick up the empty bottle without saying anything to Frank and he literally kills me. I hadn’t saved in a while. And good grief, if I wanted to see some sex I can just google it, and then it wouldn’t be badly drawn cartoons.

It’s more than just one multiple-path story though! Players can create their own custom stories within the framework of these characters in the house, and if you subscribe to the developer’s Patreon you can download custom stories from their forum. (Presumably Steam Workshop is desired, but the game is already pushing its luck with what’s normally allowed on Steam.) You too could create your own desperately sad little wank fantasy, rather than, you know, just having a wank? (Although the possibility for trolling this whole thing, with a story in which the female characters surprise the player by giving him extended lectures on feminist theory, does seem quite tempting.)

I think a lot of people assume that us liberal press types, us Social Justice Warriors, hate sex games. (That RPS has extensively covered the topic both positively and negatively doesn’t seem to change this perception.) But it’s invariably because the games themselves are just plain awful. This is atrocious! That it’s also stupendously sexist and depressing is the poisonous icing on a manure cake. But yes, it’s stupendously sexist and depressing, a sort of unaware failure of an alpha male simulator. And that’s a shame! A game in which you can meet funny, smart characters, find things in common, talk maturely and have that result in hook-ups at a party? That sounds a pretty decent idea for a sex game! This, however, is not it.

House Party is out now in early access for Windows, for £11, on Steam.

207 Comments

Top comments

  1. IceBear310 says:

    Dear John,

    I hope you get fired, including your political views in a game review is the most utterly stupid thing I've seen. Be unbiased you fucking moron.

    -Me
  1. EDPVincent says:

    Having a key just for showing your dick to people and there being a possibility to get a favourable reaction speaks volumes about the quality of the game.

    • Dreggsao says:

      Postal 2 had a button to get out your dick too, but at least everyone was either laughing at your cheap excuse for a cock or running away screaming in panic.

      • SabreCat says:

        I briefly read that as “Portal 2” and was utterly horrified ;_;

        • Premium User Badge

          Nauallis says:

          Well it’s not completely inaccurate. In Portal 2 you play as a disgruntled robot test subject woman trying to break out of your constraining environment. In a true feminist manifesto sort of way. By painting the walls with your special gun. If you know what I mean.

          And the gun turrets are your run-of-the-mill badly scripted NPC playthings. They even sound vaguely feminine. And they do scream when you approach.

  2. Jalan says:

    When this just appeared around the time the summer sale started, I couldn’t initially figure out why it was restricted by default. I took the typical user tags for granted (since most of the time they prove useless just as a game hits Steam, what with users taking to “Psychological Horror” tagbomb a cartoon-y bridge builder game, etc.) and thought it was just a bad attempt at a Sims-like. Then I realized I was wrong.

  3. Spacewalk says:

    If you really wanted to troll this you’d mod Genghis Khan in as the player’s avatar. Boring them into submission by lecturing them is no way to conquer the flatlanders you need to storm their walls!

  4. dog2 says:

    Can you get it with the guys. Can you have sex with them, to make myself clear.

  5. Premium User Badge

    MajorLag says:

    So, aside from the end goal being a one-off sexual encounter, this is basically the same as every dating sim ever created, just executed poorly even by that standard?

  6. Jay Load says:

    When Porn makes games….instead of the odd video and surprisingly well-stocked websites actually only full of click-through link-spam. Sigh.

    I’m convinced no-one in the world is actually called “Madison”. It’s such a porn name (apologies to any real life Madisons out there that haven’t changed their names and/or don’t sex people for monies).

    But that it features the type of sexual politics and sexuality only meatheads believe exists – that women are capable of being gamed into submission to male desires by finding the hidden life hacks that allow him to win the Sex prize – is as depressing as it is unsurprising. Did evolution stop for some people at lower hominid?

    I do love the ‘P’ key to deploy Penis, though. I think more games should have this. It would enliven Call of Duty or Hitman no end. (Haha, Goat Simulator!)

  7. OmNomNom says:

    Wow and its not even Japanese made

  8. Premium User Badge

    johannsebastianbach says:

    if I wanted to see some sex I can just google it

    Who does this? Googling porn?

  9. DavishBliff says:

    Oh so just because you disagree with it’s politics you think the game should be banned?

    • Premium User Badge

      John Walker says:

      And everyone who was involved jailed.

      • Andrew says:

        is not to call for it to be banned

        First paragraph! First one! Above “Read the rest of this entry”! Is that a record, or can we expect someone ignoring title?

      • Augh_lord says:

        I would rather have them make more insane games and have you review them.
        I haven’t laugh this much on ages, although I felt bad for the voice actors.

    • gulag says:

      Please outline what political stance this game is adopting.

      I mean, you might be inclined to defend this ropey-looking sex-mess for any number of reasons, but its political stance (Whatever it might be)? Really?

      • Andrew says:

        Well, technically speaking, every game is political. We tend to think about politics only as graffiti on a wall, something that was put their intentionally. But the wall itself is political as heck.

        In the case of this game, it upholds harmful stereotypes of patriarchal society: women are promiscuous, men are aggressive, etc. Representation is awful too.

        • thisarticlescks says:

          “In the case of this game, it upholds harmful stereotypes of patriarchal society: women are promiscuous, men are aggressive, etc. Representation is awful too”
          There is no such thing as patriarchal society in the west. We dont live in saudi arabia where women are not allowed to drive a car or Iran where you get executed for being lesbian.
          Women are free to act how they want. Including being slutty and participating in porn. Nobody in the game it says “hey game devs here we want everyone to know that all women are like these poorly animated pixels on your computer screen”. By that logic all porn is sexist and women should not be allowed to have sex in porn and do boob job.
          Also nobody is going to to look at this game that has graphics from 2007 and think to themselves “damn i cant control myself and i must go out and rape/objectify some women in real life”. This is the same thing what christians claimed about GTA 5 that it makes you be a serial killer. Yeah…These computer models in the game that do not do more than 3 gestures and move like bunch of retarded robots are definently too realistic and somebody might mistake that game for real world.

  10. FurryLippedSquid says:

    “The result is a game where women are portrayed in the most insulting way imaginable, feeble simpletons who will get their tits out if you can only get their idiot little minds to recognise how awesome and manly of a guy you are.”

    That’s pretty much exactly how house parties went down when I was a young teenager. We were all idiots, though, not just the girls.

    • Archonsod says:

      To be fair, treating most people are feeble simpletons who’ll do what you want if you can just convince them of how awesome you are is the fundamental basis of democracy.

    • noom says:

      “Women are … feeble simpletons who will get their tits out if you can only get their idiot little minds to recognise how awesome and manly of a guy you are.”
      – John Walker, 2017

  11. Umama says:

    Dude bros gonna dude bro.

    I would love to see the Robert Yang version of this game :-P

  12. IceBear310 says:

    Dear John,

    I hope you get fired, including your political views in a game review is the most utterly stupid thing I’ve seen. Be unbiased you fucking moron.

    -Me

    • gulag says:

      Ah yes, the call for an ‘unbiased’ review, that perennial of statements that, while correctly constructed, contain no discernible meaning.

    • MonkeyJug says:

      I’m sorry, John.

      To apologise, can I jizz on your leg in the kitchen, whilst staring lovingly into your eyes, without the requirement of any smalltalk needing to take place prior to the deed?

    • SimonSays says:

      Awe poor baby did he invade your safe space?

      Get over yourself.

    • theWillennium says:

      Dear IceBear

      Being against flagrant, stupid misogyny and terrible design isn’t a political position. Twat.

      -Me

      • goodgeorge says:

        Is it flagrant misogyny though? While you do things in this game that in real life would be despicable and the setting isn’t very realistic, is that kind of fantasy really wrong? Why this is wrong but all the games where you murder people in gruesome ways aren’t? I’m not trying to start an argument here. I’m just interested in understanding better why this game might be offensive to some.

        • Premium User Badge

          John Walker says:

          It’s a representation of misogyny, seemingly written sincerely from a misogynistic mindset. As the article says, I have not even an inkling of desire that such a thing should be banned. I just maintain the right to share in free speech in being allowed to accurately describe it.

          Were someone to create a realistic brutal murder simulator, I would struggle to play it, and communicate my experiences of it. When I play FPS games that make an effort to represent the act of killing in a more realistic way, rather than the typical human-shaped targets, I find that much more difficult to enjoy. Soldier Of Fortune 2 is usually the go-to example.

          The existence of neither is ‘wrong’, but one is always entitled to opinions about the representation.

          • goodgeorge says:

            I didn’t question your article in any way, I just personally can’t see the game as misogynistic. The game has misogynistic themes, but in my mind that doesn’t make the game itself misogynistic. I have a strong feeling that at least someone here feels that this makes also the game itself misogynistic and that was the thing I wanted to understand better.

          • Aetylus says:

            @Goodgeorge – the dividing line I usual make in this is whether the game is ONLY misogynistic. If the game allowed you to play as either(any) gender and ‘seduce’ any NPC, I wouldn’t say it was misogynistic… but when the overwhelming majority of the game involves reinforcing misogynist stereotypes… then I for one am happy to say that is what the game is.

            To an example from MOBA’s – many of then are critised because all of their female characters are sexy ladies with big titties. That reinforcing misogynistic gender stereotyping.

            But I’ll give an example of Atlas Reactor: It does include sexy ladies with big titties. But it also includes just as many sexy man with broad chests and strong arms. Even more importantly it includes loads of female characters that are strong/cool without being sexualised, and many other female characters that are dorky or even that have realistically proportioned bodies.

            I’ve no problem with sexy ladies in video games. But I do have a problem with ladies in video games only ever being sexy, and with the only sexy in video games being of the lady variety.

          • goodgeorge says:

            Why would a game that consists mostly of misogynistic content be any more a bad thing than a game that consists mostly of murder? The first one is problematic and the second one is widely accepted. I could also very easily believe that if this game was about a woman drugging men at a party and then using them as her toys this post would have way less comments. This is something I do not understand. I could also argue that it isn’t as simple as you say to add more diversity to the scenarios in this game. If we do not count the engine, adding female perspective to this game would double the required work but not nearly as double the potential audience. I’m all for making games more accessible to everyone but it isn’t always that easy or a good move financially. More varied female characters is something I would also like to see but I’m not sure is that a very important thing when it comes to games like this. I don’t know what the players of games like this exactly look for so I might be wrong.

          • goodgeorge says:

            To clarify: I very much agree with your points. They just don’t seem valid to me in this context.

          • mahoraz says:

            @Aetylus i find it baffleing how you can call this misogynistic just by sayin the women are sterotypes. Every damn male personality in this game is also a stereotype. Turning a blind eye to one male stereotypes does not make it actually misogynistic…. its just represents a certain age and how stereotypes would interact with eachother. Do we write in the history books that europe had black people before since the dark ages or that north america had asian tribes before galileo ever set foot on the continent because otherwise it would be “racist” since the other races arent included? Think about the fiasco that forced battlefield 1 to include black female character model choice for the russian side…

    • Love Albatross says:

      It can’t be the most stupid thing you’ve seen, unless you didn’t read your own comment.

      An unbiased game review would be a description of the game. If that’s what you’re looking for, read the box blurb. Or have your carer read it to you.

      • hommesansclef says:

        @Love Albatross:
        “It can’t be the most stupid thing you’ve seen, unless you didn’t read your own comment.”
        Excellent line. Am writing this down and saving for later.

      • sincarne says:

        Unbiased, to these folks, usually means “is in total sync with my views.”

    • goodgeorge says:

      While I don’t feel about the game’s problems as strongly as John, I think he made very good points about the game. No matter what kind of political views he or I as reader might have.

    • Crane says:

      Please list the merits you see in the game which you think are being passed over in this ‘biased’ article — I could use a good laugh.

    • Ben King says:

      Hey ice bear check back in tomorrow for the WAWAPTW column to let us know what games you enjoy and there is a decent chance that your dreams will come true and Alice will publicly fire Mr Walker. She’s done it before, no foolin’!

    • Beefenstein says:

      Excellent sarcasm IceBear, well done!

      • Premium User Badge

        geoffreyk says:

        See, that sounds sarcastic. But, obviously, IceBear was being sarcastic… so you’re implying sarcasm to imply that IceBear was being serious? Ha, ha, that, that is some 5th-dimensional chess-level sarcasm.

        Because he can’t actually be serious… that… that can’t be… no one… no one would… would actually… *single tear runs down cheek* He signed with a ‘-Me’!? No one could sign a serious complaint like that!

        • Beefenstein says:

          I’m telling the truth: I assumed that comment was sarcasm and enjoyed it. Following the noble eightfold path means striving for right speech, so I avoid lying.

    • geldonyetich says:

      The irony being there is no such thing as an individual without bias, and reporters are individuals, so your vitriolic kneejerk is demanding the impossible.

      But I have the sort of mind that can’t help but accept a ludicrous challenge. How shall we be unbiased about the subject of a game that creates a simulated environment where women exist to be foils to be exploited by the protagonist’s (and through extension, the player’s) desire to manipulate others towards sexual gratification?

      Well, perhaps if I were to pose the same standards on first person shooters? Are these not simulated environments where all the enemies are angry, dangerous foils whose portrayal has been tweaked so that the protagonist (and through extension, the player can derive gratification from murdering them, en masse, because after all these enemies aren’t individualized people with feelings?

      Does this analogy not hold up? For the sake of critical argument, why not? What’s different between the sexual gratification simulator and the aggression gratification simulator?

      • geldonyetich says:

        Having put a little thought towards it myself, I will say that they both make the mistake of marginalization of individuals to be personal foils in a power fantasy, but the primary difference is in the ramifications posed by the scenario.

        In a scenario where you’re gunning down vicious enemies, the pose a threat to the life of the protagonist, and so it’s them or you. What’s at stake is mortality itself, the cessation if life.

        In the scenario where you’re carousing for sex, mortality is not at stake (unless you swipe an empty bottle in the presence of a militant teetotaler, apparently). Nor is it a “them or you” scenario because if both parties were desperate to sexually exploit eachother then there’s hardly a conflict: go and fuck already. Instead, this scenario turns out to be a fantasy about victimization of others purely because your protagonist is a horny asshole.

        So, critically speaking, I think we’ve grounds for complaint.

        • geldonyetich says:

          To further elaborate, the trouble is not specifically that this is a sexual gratification scenario, just as in a first person shooter the problem is not specifically that you have a gun and are shooting people.

          The problem is there’s no mutual consent. In your average FPS, consent is implied because it’s kill or be killed.

          If we did the equivalent if what this game does in a shooter, nobody would want to fight, but our protagonist is a raging violent machine and this is all the justification he needs to manipulate others into fighting them. Press, “P” to whip out a pistol and shoot these noncombatants anyway. Enjoy the realistic death physics.

          Very tasteless. Even Postal 2 did a better job of contexting the goals than that.

    • Companion Pube says:

      Finally signed up just to point out how terrible this review is.
      This is actually the first game to feature full nudity and sexual intercourse to be released on Steam and while it is still somewhat buggy at the moment, it still overshadows every game that tried something similar and preceded it.

      If I got as easily offended by as the author, I would read Polygon or Kotaku. Seriously, if you already know that you are absolutely disgusted by the concept of tricking girls into having sex in fiction, then why not give the review to someone who is at least moderately comfortable with this?

      • mattevansc3 says:

        It being the first game to include sexual intercourse on Steam isn’t a positive, its the reinforcement of you as a negative gamer stereotype.

      • GeoX says:

        Seriously, if you already know that you are absolutely disgusted by the concept of tricking girls into having sex in fiction, then why not give the review to someone who is at least moderately comfortable with this?

        Because there aren’t any sociopaths writing for the site, maybe? Just a guess.

      • sergiocornaga says:

        I also just registered an account here (after six years of reading the site) to point out that your claim that this is “the first game to feature full nudity and sexual intercourse to be released on Steam” seems pretty spurious? Ladykiller in a Bind made its way onto Steam (unaltered) back in January, and surely fits this description. Just by skimming an article about how this came about, I saw that Kindred Spirits on the Roof, another “uncensored sex game”, came out back in 2016. Frankly, this makes me wonder if you’re aware of a wide enough range of sex games to say that House Party overshadows… every single sex game that’s come before it, if that’s what you meant?

        In unrelated news, Wikipedia seems to think RPS was founded 10 years ago yesterday (I swear it was founded in 1873). So, happy 10th birthday RPS!

    • Premium User Badge

      DelrueOfDetroit says:

      Have Overwatch avatars overtaken anime avatars as the go-to for knobheads?

    • morningoil says:

      We all know what an Icebear is, yeah … ?

      link to boards.straightdope.com etc.

      I mean, I’m assuming that that’s what it’s referring to. In the context. You know. Of defending okay-broadly-permissible-in-liberal-society-yet-probably-really-not-to-be-preferred-gender-politics type kind of thing.

      • sergiocornaga says:

        I suspect that meaning of icebear isn’t remotely common knowledge (it wasn’t to me, anyway). I probably shouldn’t have done this much, uh, research… but I actually googled “IceBear310” earlier. I found a YouTube account that uses Peridot (from Steven Universe) as an avatar, and a Steam account that uses Ashi (from Samuari Jack) as an avatar. Given that, I’d hazard a guess the username actually refers to another Cartoon Network character, Ice Bear from the show We Bare Bears.

  13. Premium User Badge

    Drib says:

    This honestly sounds sort of unintentionally funny, if it was like… sub-one-dollar cost. I mean, the line about balancing a kettle on someone’s head, for instance.

    But it does sound pretty awful. Funny as the article was.

    • Stromko says:

      Even so I think Half-Life 2 did that better. You could throw cacti in the face of people who were delivering vital world-saving story information, and they didn’t care for it much but would gamely continue on.

  14. Wicked says:

    Did I navigate to Polygon by mistake?

  15. sarial says:

    If there was ever a suggestion that PC gamers were in any way “better” or more intelligent than console gamers, the comment section on RPS puts that to bed in a hurry.

  16. mavrik says:

    The gameplay video is one of the funniest train-wreck type things I’ve seen lately (especially with Johns commentary). Well done :D

    • Augh_lord says:

      This even excels the Robot Colony Brendan endured.
      I will become a supporter if John does more videos of ridiculously bad games.

  17. Andrew says:

    Why it has “35MM” game on a table there? I’m worried now.

    Also, John, you, like, the only, like, game journalist, who, like, don’t say, like, “like”, like, a lot. So, yes, some people talk like that.

    [insert joke about “fuck like rabbits” here]

  18. gtb says:

    Is there a thing where John Walker is forced to play terrible games as voted on by the forums? Because if not, there should be. With a detailed review and a video of him actually playing it.

    • Repojam says:

      There definitely should be a “vote for John Walker to play this garbage game with commentary” option. I just want to hear more gold like “this is a douchebag simulator”.

  19. defunct says:

    I’m just here for the comments. And boy, were they over the top! I like it that John actually expresses his opinion, which is why I read his reviews (and enjoy them)! Unbiased would NOT be at all helpful. His biases are similar to mine. That, interestingly, is the same way I find movies I would like to watch. I listen/read critics who think like I do. With 7 billion people on this planet, there’s more than one person that does; and there’s likely one of those that is a critic.

  20. Stargazer86 says:

    You know, porn games COULD be good. It’s entirely within the realm of possibility. Interactivity is something that porn tends to lack given it usually comes in picture or video format 99% of the time. It’s just too bad that hiring actual writers to create a compelling story with believable dialogue that isn’t astoundingly awful costs extra time and money. Besides, everybody’s just using it to wank in the end, right? What does it matter? Gamers are lonely repressed nerds living in their mother’s basements who’ve never even seen a woman naked much less had sex. Just show ’em the boobies and presto, the game practically makes itself!

    • Archonsod says:

      Depends on how you define ‘porn game’. There’s been a few management-tycoon games set in the porn industry that were good, not to mention various Bejewelled/Beat Em Up/RPG games with pornographic cutscenes, though generally speaking it tends to be a case of a good game that just happens to involve porn rather than a pornographic game as such. Then of course there’s the visual novels, which I guess you could also see as ‘erotic fiction with pictures’.
      I’m not sure you could really turn sex into a game though. I mean given you’re basically talking about repetitive movements followed by some form of pay off what you’re most likely to end up with is something akin to Guitar Hero (though I’d love to see the novelty controller *that* would ship with).

    • and its man says:

      “You know, porn games COULD be good. […] It’s just too bad that hiring actual writers to create a compelling story with believable dialogue that isn’t astoundingly awful costs extra time and money.”

      A vast majority of porn flicks display the same kind of “bad” writing. Seems even the more prosperous studios are putting a lot of effort in keeping things looking unrefined. It’s mostly grotesque, prankish situations, and lousy dialogues.
      I sure would like to play something that has the writing qualities of Serge Gainsbourg’s Je t’aime, moi non plus (I Love You, I Don’t, for you British Gentlemen) or a Catherine Breillat movie, but I don’t see how it’s surprising that yet another porn video game is using the well-proven, vulgar routine of “unbelievable” and cheesy settings. I don’t think this makes House Party a bad sex game either.
      Same goes for the game’s immorality. Some cool sequences in Bruce LaBruce’s movies rely on overpowering scenarios too.

      Actually, I found that the most pleasantly obscene part of House Party was its broken (or incomplete, since the game is still Early Access) animations and clunky character design.
      There’s something filthy in this mess of people bumping mindlessly in each others in a staircase for 5 minutes, or their heads and feet suddenly turning 180°. And Madison’s gummy toes (did you see that?), and the clumsy male fight, or the NPCs’ comical expression of terror.

      Now the sex scenes themselves are bad. They are pretty much dull, weird mannequin-sex cutscenes. And nowhere near the genuine onanistic amusement Robert Yang manages to bring us to with his own playdolls.

    • FriendlyFire says:

      What I find weird is that the porn industry, as a whole, has often been a trailblazer. We all know their impact on the VHS vs Betamax thing. They’ve quickly moved to new technologies as well, from VR to connected devices and more besides (like those creepy/insane sex suits Japan seems to be destined to create).

      And yet, porn games are desperately bad. Outdated, buggy, ugly, with extraordinarily poor everything. I don’t get it. That’s on top of having bad stories and horrible characters, which I’m less surprised about (porn movies aren’t exactly Oscar material either).

  21. thekelvingreen says:

    you can then press 1 to have a wank

    Is this a new Call of Duty game? Call of Duty: Off Duty perhaps.

  22. DoctorDaddy says:

    Call of Booby, I should think.

  23. FeepingCreature says:

    You know what? I’m gonna try and speak out against the political bias in this article, but in a different way.

    The game is shit. I think pretty much everyone can agree that it’s shit. There is no defending this pile of manure. But, well, what the article is saying is “Us liberal SJ types, this is the sort of game that we are fighting against.” And, well, you can read that two ways: “if your game is better than this, you don’t need to worry” (hah! remember Ladykiller), or, “this sort of game is typical for our opponents.” Seen like that, the choice of game to review is itself political, an attempt to smear one’s enemies by highlighting the very worst thing they’re doing, to associate in the mind of the reader ever more firmly “anti-SJ” with “shit taste”. And, you know, personally I tend to agree about 80% with the goals of SJ, but about 30% with their methods, and shit like that is the reason why.

    Can’t it just be a shit game? Does it have to be both a shit game and a political argument?

    [edit] The fun part is that, of course, right-leaning types will gleefully play into this by deliberately pissing off leftists, because doing so improves their differentiation and group cohesion. Look at Trump, and how he basically parasitized the msm into free advertising. Sometimes, fighting is doing your enemy a favor.

    • Premium User Badge

      lasikbear says:

      lol thats quite the world view u got there bb

    • iucounu says:

      John goes out of his way to say that there’s nothing inherently wrong with a sex game, but that this one is badly-written in every way. What the article is saying is only “Us liberal SJ types, this is the sort of game that we are fighting against” if what ‘liberal SJ types’ are fighting is bad writing.

      I think a lot of people assume that us liberal press types, us Social Justice Warriors, hate sex games. (That RPS has extensively covered the topic both positively and negatively doesn’t seem to change this perception.) But it’s invariably because the games themselves are just plain awful.

      • Wulfram says:

        My observation is that RPS only tends to be positive about sex games that are targeted at people other than heterosexual men. But that may just be because sex games targeted at heterosexual men are pretty universally bad.

        • Kala says:

          don’t know for sure, but they may have been thinking about this in response to “RPS only tends to be positive about sex games that are targeted at people other than heterosexual men.”:

          link to rockpapershotgun.com

          i.e the one where Cara gets lesbians to play a lesbian sex game, who then laugh at it for being unrealistic.

          (“It’s just fingers and objects in this game,” Lacy says. “If it isn’t objects it’s her jamming her weirdly long pinky in her asshole. What do you call a lesbian with long fingernails? Single.” XD)

    • Premium User Badge

      John Walker says:

      The idea that you think we perceive any game as an “enemy” is so completely alien. It’s not about sides. It’s about is the game good or bad, smart or stupid? This game is bad and stupid. I outlined the reasons why.

      I accept there are groups who genuinely believe that women are sub-human, and that they might perceive the representation of women here to be accurate, but we will never cater to such deluded and ridiculous positions, any more or less than we would write worrying about the mad-brained opinion of unironic flat-Earthers.

    • Archonsod says:

      That’s stretching it a bit.
      If you really wanted to pull it apart you could, for example, point out that John spent plenty of time discussing it’s negative portrayal of female characters while only briefly touching on it’s portrayal of male characters (From my understanding one is basically some kind of ultra-Alpha Male power fantasy, no idea about the other one).
      Your argument on the other hand makes no sense. While he does offer points that could potentially be considered politically debatable – for example whether a game intended purely for titillation actually needs realistic character portrayal to begin with (most porn doesn’t, for example), or even (if you wanted to push it a bit) that porn/games involving degrading portrayals are necessarily bad (those into BDSM would probably disagree) he begins the article by stating it’s a shit game, and also misogynistic. At no point does he claim the two are necessarily related, in fact he balances the criticism quite well on either side to the extent that you could remove entirely his commentary regarding the misogyny and still come to the same conclusions regarding both the game being shit, and it’s portrayal of the characters being shit.
      The biggest flaw in your argument however is that at no point does he state, or even insinuate, that anti-SJ sentiment is responsible for the game, or indeed that those who disagree with his political opinions are in any way more likely to enjoy it than those who agree. If anything his review pretty much supports, and even argues, that you’re going to find this game shit whether you consider yourself anti-SJW or SJW. I don’t see anything there you could claim was an attempt to score points or virtue signal, even though I’m pretty sure the game offers ample opportunities to do so.

    • Urthman says:

      “Whoever made this game has no idea how guns work” — A VALID CRITICISM
      “The graphics in this game are horrible and unrealistic” — REVIEWER CALLING IT LIKE HE SEES IT
      “The animation is shoddy” — A GOOD REASON FOR A BAD SCORE AND RAGING AT THE LAZY DEVELOPERS
      “This game has no idea how women really talk, look, or think” — SJW NONSENSE GET YOUR BIAS BIAS BIAS OFF THIS WEBSITE I OWN BECAUSE I READ IT SOMETIMES

    • Beefenstein says:

      “Does it have to be both a shit game and a political argument?”

      If this shit game is used to represent a political message then yes, it does have to be both.

      If ‘all women are for is sex and they should respect my penis’ is a political message than this game is a political argument.

  24. Neurotic says:

    If you want intelligent conversation*, subtle flirting and the eventuality of sex on a basis of mutual respect and attraction, try The Sims!

    * albeit hieroglyphic.

    • Archonsod says:

      Well, unless it’s the latest one. If that proves anything it’s that all you need to get someone into bed is a novelty shaped pink light.

  25. emotionengine says:

    If there’s any more proof required that Steam’s recommendation algorithms still have a long ways to go, I’ll consider the case of this dreck popping up in my Discovery Queue during the recent summer sale exhibit A.

    I don’t think you’ve mentioned it in your review, John and I don’t think I came across this while skimming your video, but House Party somehow manages to be even WORSE than you describe. I’ll quote from a Steam user review here: link to steamcommunity.com

    “These actions in certain scenarios can be against the will of the guests, which I find to be rather disgusting. There is a questline in the game that has your character steal the phone of the party host and send nude photos of her from the phone to your character’s email address. The character can then blackmail the party host to lead them to a private room where the player can force them to undress, pose in degrading situations and initiate the host to perform oral sex.”

    Yeah, that’s how low it can go, apparently. But the really sad thing about this whole thing is that stuff like this doesn’t even seem to concern the majority of people who have played it, with House Party currently sitting comfortably on a ludicrous 82% positive rating and the entirety of the current second highest rated review being: “fun game that needs more content and the chicks need b u t t h o l e s”. So yeah.

  26. Moonracer says:

    I think there is a growing market for adult games of this visual style. Characters that don’t look like anime high school kids are pretty rare in the adult gaming world. So I have to at least applaud the game for that. It is too bad that this particular game looks bad, in all the ways this article states.

    I think asking for decent dialogue and interactions with characters is up there with “what if we could talk to the monsters?”. A noble idea, but technically complex to make happen. Especially for the niche adult gaming market.

    Also a good question, how do you gamify sex without making it sexist or absurd?

    • Beefenstein says:

      “Also a good question, how do you gamify sex without making it sexist or absurd?”

      Press P to respect women overall and this woman as an individual.

      Press 1 to form a stable relationship based on mutual understanding.

    • grrrz says:

      or, you know, don’t make it sexist or absurd

  27. Imperialist says:

    So, hold on here. Its a house party, run and attended by cardboard cutout celeb/partygoers.
    You expect:
    Women of high calibre to attend this sort of thing.
    Women who arent looking for some drunken bang to spice up their life.
    You dont expect:
    Men to be treated with the same sympathetic lense that you scrutinize the female characters with.

    This is a two way street. But seriously, these people are caricatures of things that actually exist. Just go to a dive bar…youll find at least one of the stereotypical “ladies” portrayed here.

    If anything its merely a scripted reality show. Dudes who do dude things, get in fights, try to assert dominion over all. Ladies who will attend a party for the sausage selection, get drunk, be worried about phone reception etc. Youll find no worse on MTV, and no better in the real world.

    • Ashabel says:

      I am 100% sure that no woman goes to a party with intent of getting raped, no matter how “high calibre” she is.

      ( Calibre isn’t a word, by the by. )

      Speaking of MTV, they actually made an entire TV-series about how that is a pretty shitty mindset to have.

      • thekelvingreen says:

        From French calibre (“bore of a gun, size, capacity (literally, and figuratively), also weight”), from Italian calibro.

        (Sorry. Your point holds, though.)

      • Ghostwise says:

        Calibre isn’t a word ?

        • Ashabel says:

          I don’t know a single sane person who uses the spelling “calibre”, which is perhaps why I missed it being the British spelling. Please forgive me for being ESL.

          That said, I definitely don’t know a single person who uses the word “calibre” to describe women who doesn’t also happen to be a raging douchecanoe.

  28. kromeboy says:

    This game (i have tried the free version, not the Steam release) shows some effort compared to many other Patreon porn games, and i think that is the best one in 3D for free.

    Still I don’t think that this review is unfair because for an early access 15€ game on Steam this game has very little to show for.

    On the story side is kind of average: not creative but i have seen lot of worse.

  29. AmazingPotato says:

    I wonder if the ladies involved in this knew what sort of game their voices were going to be used in? I mean, that the aim is to boff them and/or have them get their boobs out and/or spaff on them. What a world we live in.

    • Premium User Badge

      Nauallis says:

      Oh good, it’s not just me then. I’ve wondered the same thing about hentai for years. I figure if you’re handed a voice script that includes a lot of moaning and screaming, it’s probably obvious. A game like HuniePop, for example. Does the developer tell you up front what game you’re acting for?

    • grrrz says:

      presumably they have a rent to pay, and expect their names not to be advertised on the cover.

    • GepardenK says:

      Of course they do. Frankly I find this kind of condescending. Not every woman on the planet is a Victorian aristocrat.

  30. Scelous says:

    I actually went and bought this game based solely off of this review. Thanks for letting me know about it.

  31. Sunjammer says:

    I’m not sure pornography has much reason to portray human beings in a realistic or positive way. Quite the opposite, really, since pornography is about reveling in excess, sometimes in objectively immoral acts. I don’t give a hoot about this game but there’s an element of battling windmills to this text. “This game portrays women as idiot sex vending machines” seems to me to be exactly what the game sets out to do, which goes hand in hand with a vast subset of pornographic fantasy fulfillment. At least this game is ridiculous and can be seen as ill-conceived sex comedy, but to try and pull some sort of moral high ground on it makes the author seem a little out of touch. This game buries its face in the dirt and enjoys it, and presumably the people that buy it yearn to be down in that dirt with it. You know, just like anyone consuming pornography.

    IMO you can’t really wag your finger at porn where nobody gets hurt, especially not when it’s entirely virtual and the only person getting remotely scratched is the consumer for spending money on it.

    The idiot fuckdoll woman is a stereotype in porn just as much as the ruthless abusive bastard man is. These are different kinds of wish fulfillment for consumers. The spectrum of things to fuck and things you want to be fucked by is a roiling endless ocean of dreams and nightmares and as long as nobody gets hurt or does anything against their will I don’t think any of us have much finger-wagging ground to stand on. Heck, I’ll take a thousand House Party clones over another clearly exploitative eastern european porn any day. At least the virtual is truly virtual.

    This game did not need a review, and the moral grandstanding is graceless and without meaning. And on a more personal note, I find attempts at intellectualizing what is one of the last vestiges of humanity’s contact with the subconscious and bluntly animal teeth-gnashingly frustrating. You go fuck your way, and let the rest of us fuck in peace as we see fit.

    • Premium User Badge

      lasikbear says:

      woww ur such an intellectua lgood commnet

    • Beefenstein says:

      “This game did not need a review, and the moral grandstanding is graceless and without meaning.”

      Replace ‘game’ with ‘comment’, reflect on how pointlessly abusive you are, and have a nice day.

    • Beva says:

      Your comment is one of those things that I’ll never truly be able to grasp about you alt-righters. How can you possibly simultaneously be, on the one hand, so firm in your beliefs and so preciously delicate on the other, that the mere existence of criticism upsets you so deeply. If you don’t give a fuck then don’t give a fuck. This kind of cognitive dissonance with ones own ideology is usually reserved for very young children, and yet you display it so proudly.

      • Beefenstein says:

        “This kind of cognitive dissonance with ones own ideology is usually reserved for very young children, and yet you display it so proudly.”

        Being consistent is for libcuck left-tards. Therefore the less consistent I am the more of a PAPPA BEAR who DOES WHAT HE WANTS and DISRESPECTS OTHERS I am. Also see: environment, wholesale destruction of the; education, one of the things I am not allowing my children to participate in is; tears, liberal.

      • Archonsod says:

        The one thing the extremes on the right and left have in common is an intolerance towards expression of ideas they disagree with. The only thing they usually differ on is the justification for shooting the offender.

      • Sunjammer says:

        Alt-righter, really?

        • goodgeorge says:

          It’s fascinating how people get slapped with labels in record speed in discussions like this based on just one comment, sometimes even a very short one. Like labeling someone is some kind of argument. Is it really necessary to instantly make all kinds of assumptions about the person you disagree with. Labeling a person and then completely dismississing their input is not discussion.

    • Aetylus says:

      To be fair… the “game is effectively porn and should be treated as such” part of the comment is true…

      ..but suggesting that society’s current incarnation of porn shouldn’t then be criticized for being almost exclusively a juvenile male fantasy just doesn’t make sense.

      If porn (and porn games) adequately represented sex in all it weird and wonderful variety that would be all good. Sadly porn is deficient, catering to and representing the view of only a relative small group of people. (And even more oddly, that porn exclusivity is ultra-aggressively defended by an even smaller group of that small group).

      • goodgeorge says:

        Is that a reply to Sunjammer’s comment? I just can’t find those things you are talking about from there. And that part about juvenile male fantasy is something I don’t remember seeing in anyone else’s comments either.

      • Archonsod says:

        Pretty sure porn does indeed reflect the very wide and diverse range of sexuality. You sure you’re not just looking at the wrong sites? :P

    • emotionengine says:

      You make it sound like our sexual desires and fantasies are some kind of impenetrable [hur hur hur] black box that we have no hope of ever getting a grasp of, let alone comprehend in any meaningful manner, as these are presumably “the last vestiges of humanity’s contact with the subconscious and bluntly animal”. Sorry, but I think that’s a load of bull. I don’t think I need to go into detail regarding the positively immense body of scientific research, literal analysis and cultural commentary that has been performed on this very subject that has helped us to actually acquire a significant deal of knowledge and insight into this oh so mysterious matter (granted, we’re far from understanding everything, of course, but I hope you get my point). Indeed, you said yourself that “the idiot fuckdoll woman is a stereotype in porn just as much as the ruthless abusive bastard man is. These are different kinds of wish fulfillment for consumers”, providing a counter to your own argument by actually intellectualising the supposed “subconscious” yourself – the very practice you say you find so frustrating because of its supposed futility.

      I mean it’s not as if the creators of House Party dropped their developer’s pail into the dark well of subconscious animal sexy time, filling it with pure unadulterated primal sexual energy, then “subconsciously” channeled and molded it… into… this. Somebody somewhere spent a great deal of time thinking up these scenarios, modelling those assets, getting the jiggly physics just right, writing those lines, having those lines performed and recorded, etc. What I’m saying is that a lot of conscious decision making went into the process of making this game – just like, or perhaps even more than, your “average” porn flick. The motivations behind that decision making process and the way they manifest themselves in the end product can and should be open to criticism where warranted. A lot of the time, I think, porn gets away with this because it’s so blatantly obvious what it is it’s trying to achieve (but even here the differences in the chosen methods are probably vast and disparate). Not that that is actually okay, btw. I think it goes without saying that the porn norm is probably not a healthy way of dealing with sexuality. But with that said, from the looks of it, the goals of this game are probably similar, but they aren’t really clear either. Its tone is actually all over the place, just judging from this review. For instance, why bother with the entire lousy questing, the idle small talk and the horrible characterisations of the player and the NPCs at all if all you want to do is get to the naughty bits? Why is there so much “filler” here?

      The way you put it, “This game buries its face in the dirt and enjoys it, and presumably the people that buy it yearn to be down in that dirt with it” just doesn’t do it justice. You can’t handwave away this stuff with a “it’s a smut game about primal sexual urges, so let’s not even bother”. Clearly there’s more going on here, since the developers seemed to have made some effort to include it. They wanted you to be able to steal nude pics from a woman’s phone and blackmail her into submission so you wouldn’t release them. They wanted to show how the “clever” woman with the “clever-looking glasses” is annoyingly jumpy and a bitch for playing hard to get… because that’s presumably a reflection of reality in their eyes. And about these things, we can and should say how they can be problematic without you having to gnash your teeth in frustration just because we are seemingly doomed to never understand the nature of human sexuality.

      • Scelous says:

        “I think it goes without saying that the porn norm is probably not a healthy way of dealing with sexuality.”

        Genuine question here, not trying to be sassy or anything. What do you think is a healthy way of dealing with sexuality?

    • zero signal says:

      As Sid Meier once said, good gameplay is a series of interesting decisions. You can talk up the intent of the game as much as you like, but craft is as much of what makes a game, and this game is craftless. Discussions about the subconscious are secondary.

      This balance of intent (artistic, commercial, whatever) is one of the things game devs, pornographers and general film-makers have in common. All three have their auteurs, their journeymen and their duffers. What we are reading about here is an example of a poor game in the wank genre, because it fails Meier’s interesting decisions test, the way a “kill 10 rats” quest is a failure. Not “Plan 9 from Outer Space”-level Stunningly Poor, just a shoddy failure of craft. It is a time-to-crate of zero seconds.

      The meta-discussion of the value of wank games is on topic, sure, but nobody on this site appears to have a problem with those in general that they don’t also have about porn.

  32. Premium User Badge

    heretic says:

    +1 for video content! Enjoyed this, hilariously bad and John’s commentary is great.

  33. yogibbear says:

    I dunno, John after your trashing of Inside (which I loved), your trashing of this problems means it’s a hidden gem. ;)

  34. HeroCrests says:

    The game being horrible garbage aside… Why in the world would someone masturbate with a salami? Why would you put THAT in your sensitive parts? This is scarier than any horror game out there in the world…

    • Premium User Badge

      lasikbear says:

      A friend claimed in college he was hooking up with a girl who at some point got up, told him to stay there and then came back with some hot dogs and told him to “do whatever he wanted with them”, but I wouldn’t describe him as the most reliable storyteller.

  35. Von Uber says:

    So IGN 7/10?

  36. Thirdrail says:

    It’s funny how crippled video games are as a medium, in so many different ways, by the fact that the industry is essentially 15 year old boys of all ages making games for other 15 year old boys of all ages.

    • Regicider 12.4% says:

      Yes indeed all five games I’ve seen in the TV ads this year and now this one and only internet article I’ve clicked on. Those six are the vast library of the world’s collected interactive media on offer. 👴

  37. justregisteredforthiscomment says:

    I know I’m late to the party (heh), but now I really want to hear your opinion on Sakyubasu no Tatakai (1 and 2).

    Most (99.9%) porn games are total and utter crap. I know because I have tried a lot of them. Don’t judge me.

    House Party is on the lower end of this segment, if you leave out all the games that are blatantly unfinished to the point of only being an idea and a title.

    Of the remaining 0.1%, almost all could be described as “Take a game that works and slap some sexy pictures and bad writing on it”, and these are usually mediocre, but passable.

    A few of the ones left do this really well, though, and deserve to be called actual “Porn Games”, since they both qualify as actual good porn and actual good games. (Your mileage may vary.)

    I think lewdest labyrinth is a good example here. It has a satisfying core gameplay loop (dungeon crawling), varied original art of good quality, and it integrates it’s theme into it’s mechanics well. I think this one deservers a real review, too, but it’s probably a little shallow for that. There’s not much story and the gameplay is good, but hardly innovative.

    However, the Sakyubasu no Tatakai games are they only ones I would really call unique. Considering that they are flashgames – not minigames, these are legitimately real games – and that they are thus somewhat limited by their medium (mostly expressing itself in slightly clunky user interfaces and small resolution), they are of amazing quality in a genre dominated by crap, as described above. They have actual gameplay (which is fucking hard, too) (heh), good porn and some world building.

    I recommend checking them out if the idea of porn games appeals to you in any way. Hope you like demons. (Go for lewdest labyrinth if you don’t)

  38. aLmAnZo says:

    Just a simple question, based on your review a obvious conclusion would be that this game wasn’t meant to be taken seriously. It’s obviously a game made to give people a laugh, and nothing more. As a teen I remember playing “Battle Raper”, with themes much more questionable than this is. In both situations, I find myself hard pressed to question the morals behind the makers of it.

    There is not more to this than there is to porn. It might reflect a fantasy, yes… But again, research have shown that women often prefer rapey or more brutal porn than most guys do.
    link to vice.com

    Not to mention “50 shades of gray”, that despite being absolutely desimated by critics have really struck a nerve with a huge and all female audience.

    Does this mean women secretly want’s to be raped? Of course it doesn’t. The same applies here, playing and enjoying this doesn’t say anything about the people playing them, other than that they are maybe having a weird sense of humor. Same goes for the creators.

    It’s not my cup of tea at all. While I found “Battle Raper” to be hillarious as a teen, I find it laughable now. It’s obviously made to shock, and should not be taken as a serious message. In one of your comments you mention Soldier of fortune, another game I did enjoy as a teen. However, it did in no way reflect my ideas of masculinity or how men should be, nor did “battle raper”.

    What people take issue with in regards to these kinds of protests, isn’t that you find the content dispicable. I do to. What people get agitated about is how they feel judged based on what they find funny. By claiming the game is mysogynist, many feel you are saying that they are for enjoying it. My point is simply that it’s a very large claim to make. By assuming that people who enjoy these kinds of games have fucked up views on women or somehow think that it’s ok to treat women like this in real life, you would logically have to make the same conclusion that women who enjoy “50 shades” actually do want to be raped.

    Based on your review, it seems obvious to me that this game is playing around with stereotypes by exaggerating them. Most likely, the dev or devs have friends and family too. Women in their lives who love them, and I am pretty sure they don’t treat them the way that the women in the game is treated.

    I’m just trying to point out how people read you, and what message they recieve from this article. To many, you come of as moralizing. It also looks like your writing this to look like a better person than them, and that get’s people to act defensively. People who act defensively can be quite horrible, because despite what you might think, most people who enjoy these kinds of games are like you and me, they hate mysogyny as much as the next person.

    So the question then, I guess. How can you defend the claim that this game somehow reflects the morals or the political views of the developer(s)?

    • Harlaw says:

      “By claiming the game is mysogynist, many feel you are saying that they are for enjoying it.”

      “How can you defend the claim that this game somehow reflects the morals or the political views of the developer(s)?”

      But that’s not what John says. That’s what you are projecting onto his review. He is very clearly solely criticizing the game.

      Anyway, I’ll bite. It’s true we don’t know the political views of the devs. But if you create something – anything – and put it out into the world, you are taking responsibility for it and the kind of (political) views it seems to endorse. Saying the game’s portrayal of women as objects to be used by men is obviously meant to be interpreted as exaggerated stereotypes just reminds me of Poe’s Law. There are going to be many people to whom those stereotypes are “real”, and who in playing House Party will think that the game endorses that kind of view, and think themselves validated.

      Perhaps the developers don’t share those misogynist views! Again, we don’t know. But they are voluntarily selling a game which promotes those attitudes, and in my opinion that’s gross.

      That does not mean no game can ever feature misogyny btw. It’s possible to have misogyny be a part of a game while challenging it. I think that’s what for example The Witcher 3 does, though with varying levels of success. But that’s clearly not what’s happening here.

    • Kala says:

      “What people get agitated about is how they feel judged based on what they find funny. By claiming the game is mysogynist, many feel you are saying that they are for enjoying it.”

      I think you’re right in characterising this analysis of what’s causing some of the more emotive responses.

      But I’ll leave you to reflect on whether the conflation between “the thing I like is [x]” and “I am [x]” is the fault of the person giving their opinion on x, or the person identifying strongly enough with x they feel like they themselves are being criticised.

  39. Premium User Badge

    DelrueOfDetroit says:

    I am genuinely curious if anybody working on this game has ever had sex before.

  40. grrrz says:

    those video reviews we sometimes get are hilarious. the game in itself looks indeed hilariously bad and offensive, thanks for the preview.

  41. Sin Vega says:

    Jesus christ, people. Choosing this risible garbage you’d never even heard of until this post as your hill to die on just so you can have some imaginary moment of triumph against some games writer you dislike is so pathetic it’s almost art. Have some self re-cocking-spect.

    Also, that “I can chug a bottle of wine in under a minute” line: what a disgraceful missed opportunity for an ambulance cut.

  42. Blurqe says:

    I enjoy John’s writing style and reviews; I probably read more of his stuff than any other writer on RPS. I’m saying that first so it won’t seem like I’m bashing him. Frankly, this article mystifies me, and I’ll lay out why. From what I have seen, pornographic video tends to be horribly acted, terribly written, and to contain a wealth of character depictions that would be derided in any other context as thoroughly misogynistic. I don’t see film critics writing about these, though. Why should we care if pornographic videogames carry over the traits of other pornographic media? Why get emotionally evolved in taking this down a peg? Why are there so many comments on this article defending porn? I would think this game would be entirely beneath the notice of this website, as pornographic video is left beneath the notice of film critics. If I’m out of touch or missing something significant, I’d love to know why/what that is.

    • Spudnik says:

      “From what I have seen, pornographic video tends to be horribly acted, terribly written, and to contain a wealth of character depictions that would be derided in any other context as thoroughly misogynistic”

      Yeah, but you get to watch some lovely fucking. Sometimes it’s even up the bum.

      And as far as what you’re missing, I think we all know. Good night to you and to Mrs hand and her five lovely daughters.

      Maybe if you’re lucky your mum’s drunk on cheap gin and she’ll let you put your willy in her sodden pastry tonight.

    • Harlaw says:

      Well, I actually think porn is worth engaging with seriously and critically too, considering the huge quantities of it which are consumed by a significant amount of people. Regardless of your opinion on pornography and sex, it is part of society and so is going to show up in various kinds of media – whether that’s games or literature or movies or grossly misogynist porn videos on the internet. And the media and its implicit messages we consume matter.

      So in my opinion, it’s very important for porn – and pornographic games! – to be analysed and critically reviewed as well. Not because porn can’t be thoroughly misogynistic or badly written or whatever (it often is) but because it’s hard to challenge those aspects or advocate for change when you refuse to seriously engage with the subject.

      Sidenote: for a long time video games were considered beneath the notice of serious critics too… ;)

    • grrrz says:

      well, you should know that there is such a thing as feminist porn, and yes you can make a porn movie for both women and men that is both arousing and not sexist. I frankly don’t undestand the notion that a porn movie/game has to be sexist to provoke arousal.

      • Premium User Badge

        MajorLag says:

        And video games don’t have to be about mass murder to be fun, but people still like their mass murder games. Not everything has to be a crusade, sometimes it’s ok for people to make the game equivalent of junk-food targeted at juveniles. Hell, Michael Bay staked his career on making junk-film targeted at juveniles and he’s doing ok.

        Game sounds pretty bad, and I think we should judge it based on that rather than whether or not it portrays people realistically. Since when have games had to be about portraying anything realistically? Does anyone else remember the bit with the giant mecha-spider in that “realistic” samurai game from that one E3 demo?

        • Premium User Badge

          DelrueOfDetroit says:

          No! What Mecha fighting samurai game has flown under my radar?!

          • Premium User Badge

            MajorLag says:

            “Genji: Days of the Blade”, apparently. From the Wikipedia page:

            The game’s presentation at E3 2006, where the producer said that the game was “based on famous battles, which actually took place in ancient Japan” and then battled what he described as a “giant enemy crab”

            It was a decade ago, so I consider my statement close enough.

  43. Spudnik says:

    I find that all CGI breasts etcetera are better than the real thing. The real things are attached to women, and women is rubbish.

  44. TrenchFoot says:

    I don’t get it. Because Anime Nazis for Trump gave this game their highest rating of 5 Cumshots. ….This game is for boys whose first memory of women was their big sister laughing at their little dinkies. You are so pathetic. Even worse maybe is the ones who take it seriously. “As a cumosewer of pornographic videos, I find the reviewer’s attitude to be quite harsh.”

  45. Chromatose says:

    Good grief.

  46. Frank says:

    “You are a man, with no identifying features beyond a permanent erection”

    And in the game.

  47. Shirsh says:

    Sorry for bad English in advance.

    Gameplay video (thanks to commentaries) is very fun to watch, I’m afraid it gave this “this is so-o-o bad that it could be actually enjoyable” impression, kinda like those “Strike of Zombie-ninjas from Outer Space” trash movies and actually can sell game to people who normally wouldn’t buy it.

    But I keep thinking, characters have teenagers problems and behaviours: shy girl with big breast afraid to be center of attention, easy hyperactive dancer got high on whipped creams, jock who confiscated all booze, girl clued to cellphone. Even main character permanent erection.

    So why the hell it isn’t a spoof on the “American pie” style teenager comedies? Everything fits a lot, plus those comedies tends to tell (or at leat try to tell) stories of growing and acquiring mature feelings, beside all puberty sillyness it could’ve show main character development ability to understands people deeper, treat them in more human way and starting to be less a dumbass (or not, damn, keeping all sex content it could’ve been a compact RPG, pocket Bloodlines built around single house party).

    What a wasted apportunity.

  48. BarryDennen12 says:

    It’s sort of like watching a Jackass movie from start to finish and then wailing about the dialogue being inadequate.

    This article needs a massive addition, something along the lines of ‘why anyone should give a shit about House Party’. If the angle is that a game like this isn’t as harmless as some people say it is, and that the devs actually condone the behaviour portrayed and wanna encourage it – I’m gonna need some quotes, damnit.

    But I’m not sure that even that would make me care. I’m still in the “GTA doesn’t cause violence” camp, and cannot see something as lame as House Party being at all worth the reaction. House Party could be a piece of ‘look how crappily our characters move, and hey you can pull your doodle out’ low-brow comedy, or it could be the devs way of saying ‘this is what I wish my life was like, and you should all be groping and cumming on women whenever you go to a party’ – but again, I don’t really give a shit what the devs were trying to achieve. If it’s on my computer, I’m the boss and I decide what the game is about. Games grant us that agency, don’t they??

    PS. it’s not worth hyperventilating about anyway, the shit was free up until a short while ago. Bet you anything that nothing substantial was added. (A working foreskin, maybe).

  49. and its man says:

    But, it’s just guilty pleasure. Nothing unusual about fantasies.

  50. NailBombed says:

    Yeah, this looks fairly vile. Would’ve loved to be a fly on the wall at that sales pitch… ‘What would best make a great game for all involved here?’ ‘I know! DateRape Simulator 2017!’. This makes stuff like the boob physics engine in Dead Or Alive look almost wholesome.

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