Adult slots to titillate a new era?
Slots and casino games designed with adult-themes remain mostly untapped but this is about to change as designers look to more daring ideas.
The recent release of two Microgaming titles, Girls with Guns Jungle Heat and most recently the Playboy Video Slot, and Slotland’s Silver Kiss, have clearly demonstrated that even in the online casino industry, sex appeal still sells.
This hasn’t always been the case though in online or real world casinos. Las Vegas may be known as ‘Sin City’ for a whole host of reasons, but in the gambling halls of Vegas, the focus is most definitely on the game, rather than any pleasures of the flesh that may be available close by. There is a very good reason for this of course; when players are playing an online slot or traditional casino game they want to be solely focused on their strategy for the game at hand, not distracted by the sight of a curvaceous female, or sculptured male torso, while they play.
So, do these new releases indicate that perhaps there is a marked change afoot in the online gaming industry; are erotic games making a comeback?
If you look at the broader gaming market, then it is easy to argue that games aimed to titillate the player have never really been away. Even from the earliest days of computing in the 1980s, there were a raft of “Strip Poker” games that were very popular, even in those early days of somewhat basic computer graphics. There were also a number of erotic and occasional controversial games, which featured nudity, and more, throughout the early period of computing.
Perhaps the most well-recognized ‘adult’ game is those in the Leisure Suit Larry series, which has enjoyed a ‘naughty postcard’ feel and popularity that spans more than a decade and over a number of different computer.
Even in games that are not explicitly erotic, nudity is now becoming more mainstream Initially, Sony refused to sanction nudity on their console games (particularly for the PS2, though the rivals Xbox and GameCube did not have such restrictions). However, many new generation games, including some of the biggest names like Red Dead Redemption, God of War, L.A. Noire, Saints Row: The Third, Heavy Rain and Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne all feature scenes of nudity.
So in truth, in the home gaming market, erotic images and games have never really left the scene at any time. Of course, things are slightly different in the world of the online casino, but is that situation changing too?
The answer is that it certainly seems to be. Before online casinos, casino patrons would enter establishments on their high street and although it was an ‘adult’ environment, they were at the casino for one purpose, to attempt to win money and indulge their passions for various forms of gambling. In this situation, erotic games would prove more of a distraction than a benefit to players.
The change in casino gaming habits caused by the revolution in online gaming has altered that situation considerably for many different reasons.
Firstly, the gamer is now playing casino games in much the same way as they would traditional computer games. In as much as they are sat at home playing the game. As such, casino game developers like Microgaming have to keep coming up with fresh ways to keep players stimulated and keen to play.
Of course, many games have their own inherent appeal; that is why so many casino fans play then, but in an attempt to stave off the competition, manufacturers are now looking at what people find appealing when playing online games and as any study of the internet reveals; it is sex that sells.
Microgaming deserves great credit though for their games. Eroticism in games is a sensitive issue and there is a fine line between enhancing a game through the inclusion of erotic images or video, and simply making a game that is tacky and distracting for all the wrong reasons. Microgaming has found that balance well, particularly in the Playboy Video Slot, which could have been a disaster, but instead is a triumph. This is a slot that offers a different kind of erotic gaming experience; the sensual elements are understated and tastefully done and enhance the Playboy ambiance of the game, rather than distracting you away from the central tenet of playing.
To conclude, the Playboy Video Slot and Girls With Guns Jungle Heat are definitely not going to be the last adult-themed slots in your casino. Casino games, like their console cousins, are definitely getting more adult in content and themes but let’s hope that companies continue to present this to the user in a tasteful and clever way.
After all, casino gaming should be about the gaming experience first and any titillation should very much be a secondary issue – or should they?