“It was amazing – I was fellating my mate Sam, while his sister Judy took me roughly from behind with a strap-on – and it was all happening in my mum’s living room,” exclaims sixteen year old Rachel Wisty, describing, not a sordid teen orgy, but the latest edition of the popular Porn Star video game. “Of course, it’s no substitute for the real thing, but it’s far less messy – you don’t even have to take your clothes off. Even so, Judy got so excited I thought she was going to have a real orgasm!” The game’s popularity with teenagers has led to renewed calls for age ratings on such products to be more rigourously enforced. “This disgraceful so-called game is clearly an engine of corruption, designed solely to entice young people into sin,” declares moral campaigner Howard Thicke-Staffe. “It is obviously the work of moral degenerates – who else could possibly think the collective re-enactment of perverse sexual acts a suitable form of family entertainment?” The game, which comes with a range of peripherals to simulate various vibrators, dildoes, strap-ons and sexual organs, requires players to perform various scenes from famous adult movies, in time with the computerised versions being shown on the TV. “We were inspired by those rock musician games,” explains Andy Jigstool, managing director of Erect Soft, the game’s manufacturer. “We figured that there were a lot of potential customers out there who wanted the whole rock god experience – not just the musical performances, but the wild sex parties, too!” Indeed, the original version of the game, Cock Star, concentrated on simulating rock star shenanigans, including gang bangs with groupies and wrecking virtual hotel rooms. “Sales were OK, but not great,” concedes Jigstool. “Our market research indicated that people saw it as too male orientated and best suited to solo gaming. We realised that what we needed was something more suited to the multi-player option, with equal opportunities for women to get into the action!” He refutes Thicke-Staffe’s allegations that the game is, in any way, immoral and corrupting. “It’s just a bit of harmless fun for all the family! I mean, it’s not as if anyone actually does anything to anyone else, is it?” he declares. “In fact, I’d say that it actually promotes sexual responsibility – it allows people to experiment with various forms of sex without actually having to physically do it. You can find out whether you like, say, anal sex, without having to have your rectum penetrated by someone’s penis, or risking sexually transmitted diseases.”

Porn Star isn’t the first computer game to have incurred the wrath of moral campaigners. The so-called ‘Third Person Shagger’ genre of games – in which a player’s avatar has to have sex with as many game characters, in as many positions and combinations, as possible in order to gain points – which started to gain popularity a few years ago, have also been roundly condemned by many politicians, religious leaders and media commentators. “These games are highly irresponsible, clearly legitimising sexual violence against women,” opines top feminist Suzy Bedpost, who points out that not all of the ‘sex’ engaged in by avatars in the game scenarios is ‘consensual. “Players can commit sexual acts, including virtual ‘rape’, which, if carried out in the real world, would be illegal. Yet they carry no sanction whatsoever within the game.” Perhaps even more disturbing, Bedpost has noted that some of the game characters appear to be underage, raising the possibility of virtual paedophilia. Nevertheless, the charge that the games could desensitise players to real sexual violence and misconduct has been roundly rejected by their creators. “Look, it’s all just fantasy – no real people get shagged, for God’s sake! It’s all just virtual sex,” says Rick Rojerer of Well Hard Associates, whose Gang Bang series of games have all been bestsellers. “As for this virtual kiddie-fiddling stuff, it’s just alarmist nonsense! How can a virtual character be ‘underage’? They’re not bloody real!” Speaking at the launch of his company’s latest ‘Third Party Shagger’, Gang Bang: Modern Perversion 2, Rojerer reiterated his belief that his company’s games were essentially harmless. “What goes on in these games is no worse than the average bloke’s masturbatory fantasies,” he told the press. “Many of which include rape fantasies – and the overwhelming majority of blokes don’t go off and commit sexual offences after whipping their top, do they?” Indeed, some researchers have claimed that the playing of such games might actually help reduce rates of sex offending in the real world. “These games act like a safety valve, enabling those men prone to sexual deviancy to harmlessly satisfy their unnatural desires in the virtual world,” says Dr Hans Bonefone of the Woking Centre for Deviancy Studies, who claims to have successfully used several of the Gang Bang series to treat sex offenders. “Allowing paedophiles to abuse virtual children, is simply a way of allowing them to manage their illness. It’s really no different to those programmes were drug addicts are prescribed quantities of heroin in order to manage their addictions.”

Suzy Bedpost remains unmoved by both Rojerer and Bonefone’s arguments. “These games represent nothing less than the ultimate objectification of women – reduced to digital sex dolls to be manipulated to satisfy the electronic masturbatory fantasies of social inadequates,” she declares, dismissing the gaming industry’s claims that their products are not misogynistic, that they appeal equally to women. “Oh for God’s sake! Their so-called ‘feminist’ offering, Street Whore hardly challenged their stereotyping of women as victims – the player even gets extra points for being ‘unselfish’ by having unprotected sex with virtual punters!” Bedpost believes that the games’ designers must be forced to introduce safeguards which discourage players from committing illegal acts within the game scenarios. “Jesus Christ! What does the bloody woman want? For the electronic sex police to appear and chemically castrate players who bum a game character against its ‘will’? Or perhaps she wants really promiscuous players who don’t practice safe sex to get a dose of electronic clap which saps their energy level?” demands Andy Jigstool. “I mean, it’s not as if anybody expects players in shoot ‘em up games to face war crimes trials if they shoot some virtual prisoners or burn down a Vietnamese village, is it?” Nevertheless, Bedpost believes that rapidly advancing games technology makes the introduction of controls in ‘shagging’ games essential. “As games graphics get ever more realistic, it’s going to get even more difficult to distinguish between real and virtual,” she says. “Before you know it, we’ll have ‘first person shaggers’ with multi-player options, and people will be busy performing the most unspeakable perversions on each other’s avatars. It won’t be safe to go online without risking being manhandled to the ground and forcibly gang-banged by gangs of sexually depraved avatars! This hypothetical threat has to be stopped before it even has a chance to become real!”