Sex Blogging, Gratuitous Nudity, Kinky Sex, Sundry Sensuality
ErosBlog posts containing "3dkink"
June 20th, 2011 -- by Bacchus
So the other night I was blowing up some internet tanks and surfing gaming blogs during the 45-second wait times it takes to load into new matches after my own tank gets blown up. And there on Terra Nova I stumbled across a sex-related post that really made me stop and marvel:
Where Are All The Sex Games?
Some of the post is about the worthy topic of sex-education games (like this shooter with an STD message) but I was just sort of snoozing through a skim-read until I got to this part, which really woke me up:
There’s rather a dearth of recreational, digital sex games, a fact that surprises me given the proclivity of clever porn mongers who hawk every kind of sex ware imaginable. Have throughout history, using any available technology. It’s well established, for instance, that early photography and film thrived on sexual innovations. And we certainly spent a lot of time discussing the ins and outs of cybersex back in the day, when everything digital was a novelty. Are we jaded? Or recession economics?
Well, it seems like a business opportunity to me. They appear to sell plenty of books and board games in those novelty sex shops. People could certainly use some variety in their sex lives. Yet the ecosystem somehow manages to eschew innovation, just like the video game industry. Microsoft, for instance, is blocking sexual uses of their Kinect device, citing ‘unintended puposes’ (imagine a mash-up of a Kinect device and teledildonics – long distance love, FTW!). I did find A-Chat , but it seems like a graphics enhanced chat room app, and that’s boring, too… I suppose there’s the seedy underbelly that is Second Life’s sex subculture, but it seems, well, seedy. And not terribly educational. But if people are into it, great. Let’s just have some other options.
It is rather remarkable, when you stop and think. Why isn’t there an adult-themed cyber fun park that’s at least as large (and profitable) as World Of Warcraft? Why don’t we in the English-speaking world have a thriving sexual-games output to rival the Japanese?
I have some ideas about this, but first, it’s probably worth dipping into the shallow waters of my knowledge about the sex game options readily accessible to your average North American:
- Of course there’s Second Life. It’s not a sex game per se, but it’s a big and well-established free-wheeling virtual space, has an in-game economy, and allows an enormous degree of user customization of objects and spaces in the world. Accordingly (and this is by reputation, I’ve never logged into Second Life) it features an enormous amount of sexual material, as you would expect. Just Google “Second Life sex” to get a hint of the sexual diversity that flourishes in that environment.
- There’s a paid space called the Red Light Center that’s said to be pretty wild. I’ve never looked deeply into it, because in the screen shots I’ve seen, the female avatars compare unfavorably in appearance to the female wood elves in original Everquest, circa 1998. If I’m going to cybersex somebody’s avatar, I want it to be sexy-looking. (Yes, the Everquest wood elves were hot, for the time and the available tech. But 1998 is an internet eternity ago. I expect better now.
- There’s Sociolotron, another paid adults-only service that’s got a sort of “glorified cyberchat” reputation, along with some actual monster-bashing and game content. Speaking from a position of ignorance, this one seems to be showing its MUDdy roots…
- Trending away from the online social space toward lonely stand-alone clients on your PC, there is the family of products like 3D Kink from ThriXXX, which I have described before as “like better paper dolls for grownups”. This genre is typically visually rich but low on “game factor”; I remember a title for the early Mac in the 1980s that was called “Virtual Valerie” and involved manipulating an onscreen vibrator against a greyscale line-art posed naked woman until she made some noises and started shaking. Some progress has been made since then, especially on the artwork and customization side, with better costumes, posing, and settings. But in gameplay terms, I’ve yet to see one of these that was terribly engaging. Obviously the way to improve these is to get them onto the network and plug other gaming humans into the response loop, but so far the sites that can do that haven’t attempted to match the visually-lush qualities of these local-client electronic dollies.
I’m sure there’s plenty of stuff out there I haven’t seen, and I do invite readers to share in the comments if they know of any other noteworthy sex games. But I’m also confident there isn’t anything out there that even approaches a scale that could be called “mass-market”, and it’s a worthy question: why not?
I can think of a few contributing factors. “Uncanny valley” is a big one … we react well to cartoonish avatars and (maybe) to avatars that are hyper-realistic, but avatars that reach for realism and fall short? We process those as “creepy” and that’s usually an erotic dampener. (Certainly that’s a big contributor to my own lack of interest in the existing virtual worlds where sexual content is welcome.)
Another question is, how much are these worlds impacted by the Greater Internet Fuckwad problem? You can’t plausibly make an online adult playground without anonymity, but with anonymity comes an ocean of dicks, trolls, and creeps, all of whom feel unconstrained from demonstrating their worst and most colorful traits. It’s community poison, and the problem is too vast and varied for human moderation to be much of a solution. Some sort of clever community policing mechanic — as yet not invented so far as I know — would seem to be required.
Finally, the Terra Nova blog post focused to a much greater extent than I have here on the potential value of gamification in the field of sex education. I see the theoretical potential there, but it’s virtually impossible in a commercial sense to do anything involving legal minors and sexual information, no matter how tame. Too many people seem to go all explodey-head when you provide young people with access to sexual information; there are respectable non-profits that can survive that backlash, but I’ve yet to hear of a commercial enterprise with the ability (or courage!) to surf those dangerous waters. Worse yet, young people expect their applications to be networked; but if you add online interaction into any game environment that also requires anonymity, you’re back to the “dicks, trolls, and creeps” problem, this time with added opportunity for fearmongering. (“ZOMG, our kids are hanging out in an online space with TEH SEXXES and maybe PREDDATURZ!”)
So, that’s my answer to the missing sex games mystery: one part uncanny valley (which should go away in time as we get better at this stuff) and about four parts “how can you make a product that is pointless without anonymity but vulnerable to destruction (especially destruction of its reputation) by anonymous internet fuckwads?”
Packed deeply into the fuckwad problem, though, is the recognition that big feature-rich cyberspaces are expensive to create. If you’ve got the commercial resources to create one of these, you may find it’s safer to do something else with it (like a fantasy RPG) than to create an adult-content space that (if you fail to control the fuckwads) could destroy your corporate reputation and/or become a PR nightmare. But let me be clear: the game space itself might readily contain a thriving happy community that self-polices the fuckwads to an extent sufficient to keep the space thriving and happy, and yet it could still be destroyed (in the commercial sense) by the presence of fuckwads on the margins of the product, if those fuckwads are doing something that attracts lots of media scaremongering and knickertwisting.
So, even as we think “corps have all the money and are rightly scared to spend it on this” we shouldn’t extrapolate from there to “we’ll never see an adult playground like this”. We live in the open-source century, and big expensive-in-resources data/software artifacts are increasingly springing up like forests. We’re also learning (see “BitTorrent”) to distribute activities that are disapproved of by more dominant cultural forces (moralists with guns). So it’s easy to imagine a highly sexualized future adult online avatar space made without corporate money and running in a distributed or semi-distributed fashion that’s very difficult to suppress. That sort of project grows (if it does) very slowly, so don’t be holding your breath — but all the same, don’t be surprised if five or ten years from now, you’re reading breathless media articles about a sort of darknet Second Life where the users are complaining about virtual sharking by implacable panty-raiding fuckwads.
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December 31st, 2009 -- by Dr. Faustus
Bacchus’s many recent posts on 3D Kink along with my occasional kibitzing have twigged an interesting memory from my own past, one about an antecedent (if a fictional one) to the cool 3D toys now becoming available.
Some family vacation sometime in the early 1980. I’m in adolescence, with all that implies for family vacations. Generally not good stuff: family vacations in my natal family had a fair amount of “Look, kids! It’s the World’s Third Most Famous Tree! Let’s pull over and take pictures.” Not too exciting when you’re fifteen or so, which is a time when I’d frankly have rather been at home holed up with whatever good bad books I could glean from my hometown public library’s fantasy and SF paperback rack. But one thing that was on the road was motel cable television. We’re not talking porn here, not by a long shot. But we are talking cheesy PG rated movies, including one I saw about one minute of before being summoned off to see the World’s Second Most Famous Tree. At the time I did not know what it was. Only much movie watching later would I be able to identify it as a clip from Looker (1981).
A nude model (played by the actress Susan Dey is being scanned.
And then she is rendered as a 3D computer image:
I felt a tremendous erotic charge out of watching this scene and couldn’t get it out of my adolescent mind for days. Not only was I in a state of reverie past caring about the World’s Second Most Famous Tree, but I kept turning over in my mind possible technical details of scanning and rendering a 3D object (preferably an erotically attractive one, of course) from a series of 2D images. I made only some progress.
If nothing else, I came away with a far keener appreciation of the merits of trigonometry than I previously had. Perhaps if they had moving scan, I might have been much more zealous about calculus!
December 19th, 2009 -- by Bacchus
There I was, trying to create myself a nice Christmas elf using 3D Kink for a post to be published (maybe, if it comes out right) next week. But I just couldn’t get her to make the facial expressions I was looking for. The character editor has many undocumented options (although a manual is coming) and although the level of control is amazing, getting the precise “look” you want is not always easy. And meanwhile, while I tinkered, my elf-girl kept repeating “PLAY with me!” over and over, in a most demanding fashion. A jolly elf, she is not:
So, I got frustrated and added a ball gag. Blissful silence! Plus, no more snotty expression:
Note: To a sharply limited extent, this ball gag trick also works in real life. (Your mileage may vary.)
I do regret that the official 3D Kink gag, like early Ford automobiles, is available only in black. No festive Christmas colors!
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November 20th, 2009 -- by Bacchus
A couple of weeks ago I kvetched mildly about the limited “furry” support in the 3D Kink software I’ve been playing with, saying:
Right now there appears to be only two outfits (the tiger for male avatars, the bunny for female) and the hoods are closed-face, so using any oral-contact poses causes the software to remove the hoods. And, personally, I find that the expressive faces of the normal hoodless models go along way toward making the simulation seem lifelike; the unmoving furry-faces, for me, detract from the illusion.
Now, mind you, I’m aware that this is a little bit like complaining that the dancing bear isn’t much of a square dancer and couldn’t do-si-do his way out of a wet paper bag.
Doesn’t matter. This is the 21st century, my software toys are supposed to do what I tell them to. Fortunately, that’s generally just a matter of waiting for the next update. And so it proved in this case. Kink Land has the scoop on the latest updates (v. 2.080) of the 3D Kink software, and guess what? Bunny ears!
This time around, it’s not “You’re the girl, so you have to be the bunny” either. Guys can wear the ears too, and will if properly cajoled:
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November 7th, 2009 -- by Bacchus
Here’s something you don’t see every day, courtesy of the “Furry Fandom” sex pack in 3D Kink. Furries going at it!
Sadly for our furrier friends, the furry functionality of the 3D Kink software is somewhat limited. Right now there appears to be only two outfits (the tiger for male avatars, the bunny for female) and the hoods are closed-face, so using any oral-contact poses causes the software to remove the hoods. And, personally, I find that the expressive faces of the normal hoodless models go along way toward making the simulation seem lifelike; the unmoving furry-faces, for me, detract from the illusion. But perhaps a furry-fetishist might see it differently.
Furry things I think the software would need to be really furry: more animal types, an assortment of tails, half-face furry masks, furry leggings and boots, furry gloves/paws..
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November 3rd, 2009 -- by Bacchus
There’s something deeply, bizarrely, and recursively ironic about this. While I was playing with the 3D Kink BrainImageInstantiator (mock trademark hereby claimed), an exceedingly primitive AI (aka weblog spamming script) landed in Faustus’s post about the future of such tools, and successfully (albeit briefly) hacked a nascent argument about the potential capabilities of AIs by taking three sentence fragments from the previous comment and rearranging them into something that looked superficially plausible to my own primitive high-speed “is this comment human?” Turing-testing algorithms.
Ladies and gentlemen and assorted avatars, please fasten your seatbelts, this is gonna be a long and bumpy ride. And there’s no telling where we might end up.
Meanwhile, back at the dance club, it’s after hours and one of the t-girls (that’s the term the 3D Kink software uses, not mine) has gotten bored and perhaps a little lonely:
November 1st, 2009 -- by Dr. Faustus
Much like Bacchus I have no shortage of images in my head which I’d like to have out in the world, and also like him I have neither any real skill, nor any talent that I can discern, for doing my own drawing. So needless to say I’ve been following Bacchus’s recent posts on 3D Kink with considerable interest. Now, there have been software engines for creating high-quality graphics around for quite a while, but my own sense is that you have to be pretty damn good to get results like this:
(“The Seventh Time I Died,” by Scandinavian artist Johan Flood, gallery of his work here.)
And naturally, as a committed Linux user, I hold out high hopes for the development of MakeHuman, which can also produce impressive Poser-like results:
Still, I suspect that this engine won’t be all that simple to use.
But simpler things are surely coming, and that will mean significant changes. The point of this post will be to speculate about them a bit. There’s reason for optimism here.
The hope is that whatever interfaces we have will be easier and cheaper to use. That seems almost sure to happen, and when it does, it will mean that the sort of publicly available kink out there will be stranger, and better, and kinkier than before, because you’ll have not just thousands but millions of weird imaginations at work. That means a lot of fetishes and a lot more strange little communities of sexual interest. It was Voltaire, I think, who once remarked that if you have two religions in land they will cut each other’s throats, but if you have thirty there will be peace. As in religion, so in sex, maybe. It will be hard to have oppression of sexual minorities when pretty much everyone is part of some sexual minority or another.
A possible further social implication might be an escalation of interest in transhumanism. Once people can see vividly all the strange and wonderful things that might happen, the more they might be interested in enhancing themselves in ways such that these things could happen.
And there may be deeper technological implications as well. I’ve mulled over a suggestion made by Bacchus that perhaps in a decade or so we will have artificial intelligence (AI) engines capable of turning natural language scripts or instructions into illustrations.
That’s a tricky thought to get my brain around. Although it’s not really my thing, I sat down and composed a little bit of script in honor of the latest little weird community of interest to catch my eye out there on the internet: the so-called “shrinking woman” (SW) enthusiasts. (There really is something for everyone out there.)
||Page divided into six panels, divided into two tiers of three. All of these are set in PROFESSOR STRANGE’S laboratory.
||Voluptuous coed STACEY is stepping into the TRANSPORTER CHAMBER, which is about six feet tall and roughly ovoid in shape. Stacey is wearing shorts and a v-neck t-shirt with PRINCETON written on it.
||Caption: A demonstration for the skeptic!
Professor, are you really sure this is safe?
||A full-on view of Professor Strange. He is wearing a white lab-coat and sitting behind a complicated-looking control panel of some sort.
Perfectly safe, my dear. We are only going to demonstrate by transporting you across the room.
||View of the Transporter Chamber. A FLASH is seen in place of where Stacey was standing in Panel 1. SFX: ZZZAP!
Well, okay, if you say so, but…EEEK!
||View of a different Transporter Chamber across the lab. Stacey’s clothing is sitting in a heap on the transporter pad. Professor Strange is standing just to one side, scratching his chin. Note that Stacey cannot be seen in the panel.
||STACEY (balloon with tiny words):
Fascinating…the transport algorithm spontaneously differentiated between biotic and non-biotic material.
||Close up view of the heap of clothing. Stacey has shrunk to about two inches high. Her clothing did not shrink with her (thus leaving her naked). Professor Strange’s hand (huge in this scale) is lifting Stacey up.
||Professor Strange is holding the tiny Stacey out at arms length and is looking at her, eyebrow raised.
||STACEY (balloon with tiny words):
What have you done with me! Put me down!
This promises to be most interesting…
(The HTML tables above reproduce a script layout by Celtx, which is a very cool (and free) tool for writing screenplays, comic book scripts, etc.)
Now the above script probably isn’t your thing either, but bear with me. There would be a lot of detail to fill in here. Is Professor Strange a Mephistophelean figure or a Jerry Lewis-like nutty professor? Is his laboratory a Bond-villain lair? An antiseptic academic space? A steampunk setting? Is Stacey an anatomically-implausible comic book cover babe? Or perhaps short and zaftig? Blond, red-headed, brunette, raven-haired? European? Asian? African? I imagine you were filling in all the details as you read the script, probably in the way that you found the most gratifying.
Now in my experience (admittedly limited) in working with professional artists, I’ve prepared written descriptions to which they’ve responded with multiple pencil sketches and a query: which among these best captures what you’re looking for? It’s a process that often reveals pleasant surprises, bits of self-knowledge that I didn’t have before. (Though, to be sure, it’s also expensive, at least when I’m paying the commission.)
Now a really good AI engine would probably not just stop at turning out drafts based on your scripts. A really good AI engine will learn about you, improving its searches over time to read what you give it and turn out things that are better and better, more and more like what your mind is searching for, things you find more and more appealing. A really good AI engine — and this might be a few decades further down the road from what Bacchus first suggested to me — would be a partner, something (perhaps we might even call “it” a someone) that serves as a partner, something that builds up within itself an image of your own erotic consciousness and imagination.
(I realize now there must be artists out there beginning to gnash their teeth. Sorry guys. Feel free to imagine a future in which AI engines manage to replace the annoying writer. Maybe I deserve it.)
And that’s significant, because it’s a step forward for both you and the machines. Nietzsche wrote an aphorism in Beyond Good and Evil: Grad und Art der Geschlechtlichkeit eines Menschen reicht bis in den letzten Gipfel seines Geistes hinauf. Someone’s sexuality reaches to the very top of his or her spirit. Most likely he was right. You create a record of yourself, not just in pictures, but in intelligent software. If there’s ever to be any hope of overcoming death through indirect mind uploading, as Paul Almond has proposed, this could be an unparalleled record of yourself, the recording that reaches right to the top of your spirit.
Now that would make possible one amazing future.