We gamers sometimes get mad about the stereotypes that society affixes to us, but get real for a second: We're the ones buying this crap. The big video game companies pour tons of money into "market research"—that is to say, they go to great lengths to figure out what we like and what we're willing to spend money on. Companies don't sell games like BMX XXX or add breasts to games like God of War for no obvious reason. They do these things because they've studied us in detail and know what we'll pay for.
But there are some trends that might give us hope. As superhero movies take over the theaters, "nerd" fashion comes into style, yesterday's teenage-boy gamers become today's grown-man gamers, and casual titles bring a wider and wider demographic into the world of gaming, companies' market research might start telling them something different. Purely for business reasons, game companies might see the problems with assuming that all your customers are hormone-saturated teens. We're already seeing this in the truly mature plotting of games like BioShock.
Of course, no one is saying that games should never contain immature nudity, and it would be foolish even to hope for that. Fifteen-year-old boys ought to have some products that cater to their needs, after all.
But how much is too much? Once again we can look to movies for guidance. It's certainly not as if no movie on the face of the planet features some gratuitous nakedness—it's just that the overwhelming majority of movies aren't like that, so people don't end up thinking the entire medium is immature. We should strive for the same thing in gaming.
So, if we gamers want our hobby to gain some respect, we can start by insisting on a more thoughtful approach to sex. At least most of the time.
Date: July 30, 2012
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central. This week's is also purely a work of fiction*