or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love Japan
When I saw the words “VR Kanojo Demo!” on the front page of the /r/Vive subreddit, I instantly knew two things:
- We were getting a new porn game, and
- I wasn’t getting to sleep for a few more hours.
I don’t know what “Kanojo” means, but I do know that “VR” followed by a Japanese word followed by a NSFW tag means VR porn game. So I quickly gathered my gear and downloaded the demo. After an unzipping screen, an installing screen, and an unzipping, I was greeted by a splash screen that looks as though it could conceivably be a part of any software since 1995, offering many modes of ingress and quality options. I left everything on normal, selected “HTC Vive” and the demo booted up.
(All screenshots are taken at normal quality settings with 100% render size. Also, apparently my head is on wonky. Please excuse the tilt in these images.)
What met my eyes, after the all-too-familiar-by-now ILLUSION logo, was a bright and calming warning label, telling me to make sure nobody’s around to ogle at me while I ogle at some girl (presumably).
After making sure my family was nowhere to be seen, my headphones weren’t leaking and my key was closed and strictly locked, I pulled the trigger and went deeper into this virtual rabbit hole. Humorous translation aside, It’s nice to have a porn game remind you about privacy. I then found myself whisked away and planted squarely in the room of a typical teenage girl (probably). Maybe a little more studious than most, but I think that’s part of the appeal.
Meeting My New Bae
It feels a little awkward sitting in somebody’s room without meeting them, so I stopped looking around, resisted the urge to try the benchmark first, and clicked “Meet Sakura”. Suddenly, I disappeared into a strange blue land, where the words “Virtual Reality Kanojo” were floating before me. It was at this point I pieced together that “Kanojo” probably means “Girlfriend”. Just as I’m musing over how clever I am (heavy sarcasm), I’m back in the bedroom, only this time a schoolgirl (who I’m told is older than 18) is occupying the previously empty seat in front of me.
This must be Sakura. She rises and greets me, before complaining about the heat and bending down to turn a fan on. It’s here that the second-most interactive part of the demo shows itself. With the fan blowing slightly up her skirt, I’m asked if I want to peer underneath it. Since I get off on doing the wrong thing, I shake my head “No”, and the game is incredulous.
Now, the phrasing of that question is a little confusing; double negatives always do that to me. But rest assured I tried every possible option in the demo, and if you truly don’t want to gaze at her goods, she just turns the fan off. However, if you do…
It’s Game Time! Well.. Sort of.
I mean, out of context, this is a pretty weird thing to do. Especially since if you do move your head to peer under her skirt, she buckles her knees! Do you want me to look or not? Look Sakura, If you’re gonna get coy, I’ve got a hundred other ILLUSION games with poor-to-decent HMD support I can play, alright? But I digress. A timer bar quickly fills – you’ve got about 20-30 seconds to enjoy the view (read: crawl around on your hands and knees, craning your neck, because that’s the only way you can see anything) before the scene ends and you’re back on the chair.
And that’s it. She kicks you out into another instance of her room where she’s been replaced by floating Katakana and buttons. Boy, if I had a nickel. Oh well, it’s time to try the Sakura Benchmark.
How I wish all benchmarking programs looked like this. Sakura lies there, eyes closed. Her fan, at the foot of the bed, is switched off. Halfway through the benchmark, she rolls over and lies face-down. It all looks very realistic. Then it ends, and you get an Angry Birds™-style grading of your computer’s performance.
As stated before, I can’t read Japanese, but I’m pretty sure that text in red is telling me that my toaster is out of date. Moving on. I thought that was about it for the demo, but upon returning to the main menu, a new development had been revealed to me.
Fortunately, clicking that button didn’t take me to ILLUSION’s Facebook page circa 2012, but rather to the second half of the scene we just witnessed. Only from a different perspective. That’s right…
I’m a fan.
The best part about this was that the fan was head-tracked, so now I know what it’s like to be a pedestal fan. I don’t really get the point, since I’m only going to be looking in one direction – the direction of those glorious glutes – but the novelty was still pretty cool. Sidenote: the blinds were unaffected by the fan breeze. I’m not sure how much that impacts your decision to play the demo or buy the game, but I’m a fan of full disclosure. Don’t mention it.
The demo itself took me about 10 minutes to experience everything in it. That said, it’s a demo. However, the attention to detail in the environment, and in Sakura’s animations and appearance, lead me to believe that the full version could possibly be one of ILLUSION’s best games (if you can excuse the aforementioned fan/blind oversight). Sakura herself doesn’t seem overly cartoony or inhuman in any way, and provided that the whole game isn’t just her rolling around on a bed like two thirds of the demo was, then I’d say it would be one of the definite pickups for anyone looking at adult VR games.
Of course, no rundown on a VR game starring a cutie in a miniskirt would be complete without at least one quality upskirt, so here you go.
You can pick up the demo here.