The Oculus Rift is getting a hot injection of the erotic kind. Wicked Paradise, based in Irvine California, is producing a series of episodic erotic games to cater to all sexualities. Though it's in the early stages of development, it's certainly a neglected space in the games market, and so it will be interesting to see how this works out for the developer, who has on board staff who have worked on AAA titles such as Rage, the Call of Duty series, Lost Planet, Madden, and PlanetSide 2. I asked for an interview to find out more.
Wicked Paradise's founder, Jeroen Van den Bosch, answered my questions via email about what he wants to achieve with his games. Wicked Paradise seems to be in very early development of their content - just the test stages really, so currently it seems that developers are just forming ideas about what they want to do with the new technology. So far screenshots have very heavily indicated that women of a certain type will be a focus of the experience.
PCGN: What made you want to start making specifically erotic games for Oculus Rift?
Jeroen Van den Bosch: It was a combination of two things. First I always found it intriguing that there are so many beautifully crafted shooter games on the market, but not a single, well designed adult videogame, so I always had this idea of creating a high quality adult video game. Secondly, I had the chance to test a very early prototype of the Oculus Rift last summer and it blew me away. I immediately realized that Virtual Reality is the perfect medium for a highly immersive adult videogame.
PCGN: You have a lot of developers from AAA backgrounds working with you on the team, including a lot of developers from franchises famous for being more about violence than well... love. Was that because of a certain fatigue in the industry?
Jeroen Van den Bosch: For a large part it's because some of the most veteran game developers in the industry have been doing the same thing over and over. After years of modelling guns and soldiers, I can imagine why a lot of them are really wanting to do something different. But it's also simply the fact that Virtual Reality is really something that sparks people's imagination, and game developers are all very creative people so their imagination is running wild since the Oculus Rift got announced, they really want to get involved in this.
PCGN: What kind of content can we look forward to with your games? What kind of environments? And what kind of experiences?
Jeroen Van den Bosch: We are going to develop different experiences for different audiences. Our goal is to cross uncanny valley so we are using the most advanced techniques from the videogame and movie industry in order to get the characters and environments as realistic as possible.
PCGN: Will narrative be important? Are there pop culture cues you are looking at?
Jeroen Van den Bosch: Storyline is very important for us, we want to generate erotic tension between the player and the virtual characters. You need a solid storyline in order to achieve that. It will be a modern day setting, I think the best way to describe is like an adult version of Heavy Rain but completely designed for Virtual Reality.
PCGN: How do you playtest this game? Is there a specific reaction you or the developers are looking for?
Jeroen Van den Bosch: We are currently in pre-production, experimenting with different techniques to see how we can achieve maximum immersion with the current technology. So playtesting is not on the menu just yet. :)
PCGN: Is this specifically targeted at a straight male demographic?
Jeroen Van den Bosch: Wicked Paradise will be episodic, much like the brilliant videogame The Walking Dead. The first series will be from a hetero male POV, but we'll have different series that cater to different genders and sexual orientations, it's our goal to ultimately have Virtual Reality experiences for everybody to enjoy.
PCGN: Will there be games for other sexualities? What do you have in store there?
Jeroen Van den Bosch: Definitely, we actually received more inquiries about Wicked Paradise from females than from males, so it's our intention to also create mature virtual reality experiences from a female POV as well as experiences for the LGBT demographic. :)
Thank you for your time, Jeroen.
Here's an animation test from Wicked Paradise: it features a lady.
A person called 'Zain' has commented on the video, saying, "day one buy for me but the boobs gotta be more realistic and more enhanced graphics would be a guge plus but until now it looks fantastic".
Guge plusses? Also, what is the test for realistic boobs? I can't even tell if my own are realistic. I am looking at them right now and I am not sure they have enough graphics. They certainly aren't a focus of my day. Does it make them more erotic if they are realistic? Does 3D make everything more erotic? Perhaps he is talking about the boobs' expectations. Perhaps they have to understand that they might never move away from the lady's body, and get a job, and go it alone in the big city. The boobs are not made for that. And they are kidding themselves if they think that life is for them.
More about Wicked Paradise here.