AG: I thought we were keeping our nose clean of controversy.
RK: Think we're on safe ground with this one. It's a lot of fun that game. I heartily recommend it.
AG: Little wonder. You were "hanging out the back" of all of those creepily bare-breasted nymphets weren't you? I saw it over your shoulder.
AG: I mean, I don't want to be a prude or anything. But how many of them jumped on the bed so that you could have full sex with them - apropos of nothing?
RK: When did you start saying "apropos of nothing"?
AG: When I begun a legal case against my employer's sister company for phone-tapping, and then was subsequently sacked from my day job following mysteriously leaked footage.
AG: Point is, I've done wrong. Heck, Rich, we've done wrong. But shouldn't people perhaps be a little more up in arms about certain prevalent - expected! - chauvinistic attitudes in triple-A game design? It's kind of like the things we did and said off-air being amplified with added filth, and then being paraded on-screen as "all boys together" entertainment, no? Unless I've got this "context" thing muddled again.
RK: Andy, Andy, Andy...
AG: And, right, aren't games - just like football - trying to shake off an image that they're exclusively for one demographic? Boys in bedrooms, Bovril-slurping neanderthals... it doesn't matter. It's the reinforcement of exclusivity that's the problem; testosterone-tickling, segregationist attitudes which ostracise potential new customers.
RK: You sound like Jamie bloody Redknapp. I think this is perhaps less of a trend than you're suggesting...
AG: Female masturbation in Bayonetta; shower scenes in Catherine; spending time with Lara Croft's inner thighs every time you climb a wall...
RK: It's just harmless fun. And it doesn't happen that often.
AG: ... Heavy Rain's cringeworthy flesh sideshow, The Witcher's never-ending procession of dangling areolae, the fact they tried to make a modern Leisure Suit Larry... not to mention E3 booth babes with the logos of poor-selling, poor-quality tech companies across their tits; the crapper the brand, the more diminutive the outfit...
RK: Gamers - heck, blokes - like this stuff. It's not evil and it's not rocket science.
AG: Oh, I completely agree, Rich. There's nothing malevolent about it, or wrong about gamers using it as a talking point. Sex sells, no-one gets hurt. I'm just wondering aloud if it's always appropriate for studios to shoehorn in these elongated, awkward icky scenes - especially when they work in an industry where just ten per cent of employees are female. It might actually smack of a need for a change in attitude during development, no?
To use a well-worn phrase I'll possibly never be employed to say into a mic again... at the end of the day, it kind of seems like football - the supposed epitome of fossilised male dominance and antiquated inequality - is doing more to address the issue.
RK: You have been talking to bloody Redknapp. Look, it's like this: Me and you, Gray and Keys; at Sky Sports we were dinosaurs commentating on an ancient world. But video games... they're a bleeding edge entertainment medium, splishing in the lapping waves of the zeitgeist. Any suggestion that major studios are still latently obsessed with pleasing an audience of sexually frantic teenage boys when their consumer base is now far more universal is poppycock. And I remember Elvira.
AG: I guess. What do I know? After all, I said: "Women don't understand the offside rule," and other such atrocities.