“Vaginas are the weed of video games,” says Jim Sterling (NSFW, obviously)

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Yep, that’s a headline I just got to write. I love my job some days.

Some context: you may remember Jim Sterling as the independent video game critic whose activities we’ve covered before here on LoadScreen. We’ve written about his crusade against microtransactions in full priced video games, an opinion I share, the lawsuit levelled at him by a developer whose games he rightfully criticised, and just recently how his version of the Nintendo Switch reveal trailer is infinitely better than the original.

Jim Sterling 1

I’m reusing this picture because it’s awesome.

But in this week’s episode of The Jimquisition, Sterling discusses a topic that is too good not to share, because it relates not just to video games but also media as a whole. In case you hadn’t already guessed it, the topic is the depiction of female genitalia in video games, a discussion that was brought to forefront of video games media recently when someone playing Watch Dogs 2 discovered one of the female civilian character models had an explicitly rendered vagina.

Posting on NeoGAF, the player said the woman was part of some accidental collateral damage after a gas pipe explosion, hence why she was lying on the ground and they were able to see her genitalia under her dress. The player used the Playstation 4 Share feature to post a screenshot of it online and had his account temporarily banned by Sony as it was deemed to have breached their Terms of Service for being “content of an adult or sexual nature”.

Watch Dogs 2 developer Ubisoft has since apologised for the character model’s inclusion in the game and is releasing a patch to remove it. But the situation has caused many to question why the genitalia of the model was so detailed in the first place if it wasn’t meant to be seen, but also why seeing a vagina in a non-sexual context is considered objectionable when flaccid penises and bare breasts have been present in video games, including Watch Dogs 2, for some years now without issue?

This is where Jim Sterling comes in, making the argument that “vaginas are the weed of video games”. That if we consider penises and breasts to be alcohol and cigarettes, both perfectly legal and socially accepted, the vagina is like marijuana: something considered by some to be no worse than the other two but just didn’t get in there quick enough to be considered the norm.

I’ll let Jim explain it better than I can, and with far more hilarious/cringe worthy slang terms for genitalia than I could ever come up with.

Send your best genitalia slang to Tom on Twitter @tomdheath and don’t forget to follow @load_screen and like us on Facebook.

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