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Twitch bans shower sim Rinse & Repeat; dev Robert Yang calls policy a “disgrace”

Rinse and Repeat

Robert Yang is a solo developer whose Half-Life 2 experiment, Radiator, made our 100 best mods on PC. Since then he’s made a series of thoughtful games about sex and LGBT issues, like Stick Shift, which Steve covered in his column (fnar) about Having Lots of Sex With Men in Videogames.

Yang’s latest is Rinse & Repeat, a game about washing a muscly man in sunglasses in a public shower. It’s also about delayed gratification and consent, but that seemed to be lost on Twitch, who banned the game from streaming this week.

Twitch’s rules of conduct dictate that nudity “can’t be a core focus or feature” of a streamed game.

“Occurrences in game are okay,” they explain, “so long as you do not make them a primary focus of your stream and only spend as much time as needed in the area to progress the game’s story.”

Yang wrote on his blog that the rules erase the context of his work and ignore how nudity is presented – “instead focusing on a nonsensical formal distinction where ‘nudity is okay if it’s only a fraction of the game’”.

“The idea that nudity and sex are allowed on Twitch, only when it’s tangential and exploitative, is a fucking disgrace,” he says. “It sends conservative messages for what is allowed to be a ‘real game’, and discourages artistic experimentation from developers for fear of being banned from Twitch.”

Given the rising impact of streams on sales, that’s no small consideration for a developer.

Yang believes the rules stick Rinse & Repeat in the same bracket as some really horrific stuff: “This equivocation is offensive to me, when I focus heavily on ideas of consent, boundaries, bodies, and respect in my games.”

Here are, in our opinion, the best adult games on PC. Beginning with ‘Pretty much every Bioware game since 2005’.